Development of a Guided Internet-Based Psycho-Education Intervention Using Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Self-Management for Individuals With Chronic Pain

Jennifer Perry, PhD; Elizabeth G. VanDenKerkhof, PhD; Rosemary Wilson, PhD; Dean A. Tripp, PhD


Pain Manag Nurs. 2017;18(2):90-101. 

In This Article

Abstract and Introduction


Evidence-based chronic pain treatment includes nonpharmacologic therapies. When addressing barriers to treatment, there is a need to deliver these therapies in a way that is accessible to all individuals who may benefit. To develop a guided Internet-based intervention for individuals with chronic pain, program content and sequence of evidence-based treatments for chronic pain, traditionally delivered via in-person sessions, were identified to be adapted for Internet delivery. With consideration to historical barriers to treatment, and through use of a concept map, therapeutic components and educational material were situated, in an ordered sequence, into six modules. An Internet-based chronic pain intervention was constructed to improve access to evidence-based chronic pain therapies. Research using this intervention, in the form of a pilot study for intervention refinement, was conducted, and a large-scale study to assess effectiveness is necessary prior to implementation. As clients may face barriers to multimodal treatment for chronic pain, nurses could introduce components of education, cognitive behavioral therapy and self-management to clients and prepare them for the "work" of managing chronic pain, through use of this Internet-based intervention.


Chronic pain is a significant issue at both individual and societal levels (Choiniere et al., 2010; Guerriere et al., 2010; Kronborg, Handberg, & Axelsen, 2009), and access to evidence-based timely care is a treatment challenge (Bromberg et al., 2012; McCracken, MacKichan, & Eccleston, 2007; Peng et al., 2007).. There is a need to find innovative ways to deliver effective therapies in an accessible way, with little cost to individuals who may be struggling financially due to the economic burden of chronic pain. The Internet is a resource that has not been fully explored for this purpose. Through delivery of guided, Internet-based cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and self-management (SM) interventions, overall quality of life for individuals with chronic pain may be improved.